WWE and AEW Stars on Cusp of Headlining PPVs in 2022

Donald Wood@@Donald_WoodFeatured ColumnistDecember 19, 2021

Drew McIntyre poses for photographers upon arrival at the European MTV Awards in Budapest, Hungary, Sunday, Nov. 14, 2021. (Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP)
Vianney Le Caer/Associated Press

Amid the winter holiday period, wrestling fans have turned their attention to 2022 and which performers could make the jump into their respective promotions' main event scenes and begin headlining major pay-per-views.

In WWE, the stage is set for Drew McIntyre to once again begin challenging for a world championship, likely against universal champion Roman Reigns.

On the All Elite Wrestling side of the equation, Thunder Rosa looks poised to take the belt from Britt Baker, a move that will almost certainly result in main event matches. Here are the wrestlers who will ascend to the PPV main event next year.


Drew McIntyre

After carrying WWE through much of the pandemic, Drew McIntyre became an afterthought on Raw before moving to the SmackDown brand earlier this year. While he has been involved in several meaningless feuds since, the time is near for an ascension back to the top of the card.

McIntyre has been on the periphery of Universal Championship contention for weeks, teaming with Xavier Woods and Kofi Kingston in a battle against The Usos and their cousin, titleholder Roman Reigns. With Reigns likely to hold the title until WrestleMania, he needs a Superstar face who could take the championship and utilize the massive rub of winning the belt.

After being one of the hottest performers in the business before being cooled off, beating Reigns would cement McIntyre as a top star in the company again and give him the coronation he deserved when he defeated Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 36.

With the correct creative direction and protection from lackluster booking ahead of January's Royal Rumble and WrestleMania, McIntyre could once again gain the support of the WWE Universe and be the perfect challenger to finally dethrone The Head of the Table.


Thunder Rosa

While Britt Baker is running AEW's women's division as a dastardly heel, the stage has been set for Thunder Rosa to take the title and become a main event player for the company.

The rivalry between Rosa and Baker has led to some of the best women's matches in history, and the feud will culminate in a title change in 2022. With AEW looking to bolster the mainstream appeal of its women's division, Rosa is the hero wrestling fans need.

For months, the women's division has been led by a heel, which limits how much the causal fans can get behind the champion. Rosa is a star with a unique look and style that will provide AEW with a bona fide main eventer.

When it's time for Rosa to make the jump back into the women's championship hunt, she will be main-eventing PPVs and episodes of Dynamite and Rampage.


Kevin Owens

After recently signing a multiyear deal with WWE, wrestling fans should expect Kevin Owens to be at the top of the card and headlining PPVs for the foreseeable future.

Not only has he already found himself in the WWE Championship conversation—although it's not in a one-on-one capacity—but the new deal is also lucrative, which means WWE has long-term plans to keep him as a workhorse in the world title scene.

As one of the best talkers in the business and a unique talent in the ring, Owens can carry a match with anyone on the roster and make his challengers look strong. As long as WWE continues to value his abilities, he should spend the rest of his career at the top of the card.

While he undoubtedly would have accomplished greatness in AEW, spending a few more years main-eventing in WWE will give him the leverage to one day jump ship to Tony Khan's promotion and become a top star there too.


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